Clarenville—A teenager’s decision to take a walk up the street following the storm and blackout Jan. 4 may well have saved a man’s life.
Seventeen-year-old Adam Ryzuk was checking on how snowclearing efforts were progressing on Palmers Lane about 4 p.m. the Sunday after the storm when he heard someone crying out.
He assumed the noise was kids fooling around, but as he approached the source of the cries he came across an ATV with a plow attachment overturned beyond an embankment.
“When I came across him, all I could see were his boots sticking out from under the quad,” says Ryzuk.
Ryzuk was unable to lift the ATV on his own. He reassured the man that he would get help and then went to the nearby home where the man’s daughter-in-law lived. She enlisted the help of two neighbours and, with the help of Ryzuk, they were able to free the man.
The man, who is in his early 60s, had been trapped under the ATV for more than 90 minutes in freezing temperatures.
Ryzuk says the man seemed surprisingly OK despite the circumstances.
“He thanked me for getting him out and that kind of stuff. He seemed alright. He was happy to be out.”
The man, who asked not to be named, was plowing his son’s driveway when the accident occurred.
Ryzuk’s mother, Diane, says the man’s son had recently begun renting the home and was unaware of the steep embankment leading to the river.
“The man didn’t know the river was there, because his son had just started renting the house. His son was away and he had the quad with the plow and he had a ledge made,” says Diane. “As he was pushing the snow, it went up and tipped over. When the quad started tipping, he went with it and in under it.”
Diane says the man was pinned on soft snow and he was unable to get out.
“He didn’t have the leverage to try and squish himself out. He couldn’t do anything.”
As another neighbourly gesture, Adam and his father, Doug, went over the next day to help the man pull the ATV up from the embankment.